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7 Mistakes We Women Make with Entrepreneur Conferences

by Larry Chiang on April 16, 2012

Larry Chiang investigates and experiences entrepreneurship and pre-entrepreneurship. He covers the front-lines via Bloomberg BusinessWeek’s channel “What They Don’t Teach You at Business School”. He has a JBA not an MBA. Its a Jedi in Business Administration. After Chiang’s Harvard Law keynote, Harvard Business wrote: “What They Don’t Teach You at Stanford Business School“ (the same title as his NY Times bestseller). If you read his scandalously awesome “How to Hack at AfterParty“, “What a Supermodel Can Teach a Stanford MBA” and “How to Get Man-Charm”, you will like his latest post:

7 Mistakes We Women Make with Entrepreneur Conferences

By Larry Chiang

I’m going to “She Plus Plus”

It’s a tech conference for women at Stanford University. I go because, well, there are women there. Entrepreneurial, tech savvy women.

No, my father doesn’t know I go
No, my mother does not know I crash undergrad women focused conferences sometimes with my CNN press pass.

But my funds’ (plural!) LPs expect to get a return so I respect them and their fund of fund’s. I actually don’t know what that means. I just know I have to make the money returned GREATER THAN money I’ve taken.

Here are “7 Mistakes Female Entrepreneur Conferences Make” — I just changed the deal on you— yup, I’m a VC.

-1- Fail to get men in subservient positions

Have you seen who works the door at tech events?!

Women do. Usually minority women.

Well, at a women’s entrepreneur conference, I’d get dudes to be our checkin bitches.

-2- Pre-Blog

Pre-event blogging is critical. I gained Paris Hilton status showing people an engineered method to get the knowledge of business school BEFORE you go. To business school.

Pre-blog to preview the knowledge of your conference “She Plus Plus”

-3- Make sure you get a housekeeping – call to order speaker

This person introduces the conference chairs and tells us where bathrooms are like a male flight attendant.

They don’t get to even say their name.

Ideally it’s an alpha male celebrity that does this demeaning role of having to quiet people down. Announce schedule changes. Usher, wrangle and get all dressed up in a suit on a Saturday just to speak for 6 minutes

-4- Fail to Do a Pre Conference Party

Before sxsw, I threw a dozen parties promoting sxsw and sxsw isn’t even my franchise.

Pre-conference parties build awareness. Drive conversions.

-5- No freebies.

We as women dont value stuff that’s free. I mean when have we yearned for a purse that didn’t cost $2k?!

In fact, we run from free.

Want a free dinner at Evvia at Table 60 with Larry Chiang?

You think: ‘what’s-the-catch-umm-no’

So why are we doing $0 conference tix when comparable conferences cost $2k? This leads me to…

-6- The Stanford iPad Giveaway

Come and you’ll be entered into a drawing for a free iPad or two.

We did not do that where I went. You were lucky to get lunch and a Chinese TA whose accent was so thick I stood at the front and translated (for a fee). Yes, I went to the self funded institution in the Urbana community area of Illinois.

-7- Larry Chiang Reverse Rebate Model (LCRRM)

Failure to use LCRRM is a big mistake. Especially for a free conferences

Google LCRRM
It has a replicable (dare I say) recipe to sell out an event

-8- Failure to have a man cook for is women

I mean the ultimate form of success for Chinese people is to hire a while gardener or while landscape architecture professional.

At female entrepreneurship conferences a powerful alpha male should come effen cook for us. Breakfast.

We as burgeoning female leaders need to trust but confirm. I mean do wr want a man to eff up our lunch??! Nope cook us breakfast. Maybe chocolate chip pancakes. If you screw them up, we will have bagels.


*** BONUS ***
a party invite for you…

If you liked this…

defaultLarry’s mentor Mark McCormack wrote this in 1983. His own book came out 09-09-09. It is called ‘What They Don’t Teach You At Stanford Business School

This post was drafted in an hour and needs your edits… email me if you see a spelling or grammatical error(s)… larry@larrychiang com


Larry Chiang started his first company UCMS in college. He mimicked his mentor, Mark McCormack, founder of IMG who wrote the book, “What They Don’t Teach You at Harvard Business School”. Chiang is a keynote speaker and bestselling author and spoke at Congress and World Bank.


Text or call him during office hours 11:11am or 11:11pm PST +/-11 minutes at 650-283-8008. Due to the volume of calls, he may place you on hold like a Scottsdale Arizona customer service rep. If you email him, be sure to include your cell number in the subject line. If you want him to email you his new articles…, ask him in an email :-)

You can read more equally funny, but non-founder-focused-lessons on Larry’s Amazon blog

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